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The Plague of Frogs 243

jpbostic writes "According to this article on MSNBC, ag folks in Hawaii were considering using powdered caffeine to help rid themselves of an infestation of frogs from Puerto Rico. The EPA's application regulations apparently proved too burdensome and the stuff sits in a warehouse. If the EPA is really concerned with the danger, they should investigate the coffee in some restaurants *quoth the caffeine addict*. :-)"
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The Plague of Frogs

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  • Holy shit.. (Score:4, Funny)

    by I.T.R.A.R.K. ( 533627 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @08:22PM (#3467479) Homepage
    ..when I first read that headline, I thought the French were invading!
  • by abh ( 22332 )
    I can't be the only one, who, after reading the posting, immediately had visions in my head of hyper wacked-out frogs jumping all over the place...

    Am I?
    • Heh. Because the caffeine would make them jumpy.

      I'm sorry. I'm going to go take a nap now. Moderators, do what you must.

    • Re:Frogs on caffeine (Score:4, Interesting)

      by dagoalieman ( 198402 ) <thegoalieman&yahoo,com> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @08:33PM (#3467514) Homepage
      No, you're not the only one, but IIRC it won't happen.

      I **vaguely** recall hearing that the caffiene has an adverse effect on their nervous system, in essense blocking the signals from the brain and to the brain. As in once they get it in them (dunno if it's absorption or consumption) they just don't move.. and shut down.

      Someone please correct me. That's so vague on details that I'm SURE I've at least got part, if not all of it, wrong. Hopefully the real solution is better than freezing to death, though...

      • They're hearts basically stop. It's the quickest way they have for killing them without harming the native animals. Also from the TLC show I talked about in a previous post.
        • But what happens when native animals get the caffeine? So the frogs die, but what about the birds? This can explain that bird on the beer commercials who keeps attacking people at a resturaunt and taking their beer and bringing it back to its owner. it some how all makes sense now ;)
      • Re:Frogs on caffeine (Score:2, Informative)

        by ahaning ( 108463 )
        As with most topics, a cursory search of Google popped up this [] link. The relevant part:

        Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant that interferes with a neurotransmitter in the brain called adenosine. Caffeine also acts at other places in the body to increase heart rate, constrict blood vessels, relax air passages, and affect muscles. An overdose of caffeine is lethal to the coqui frog.

        There is a link [] there to another page with examples of what they sound like. Though I'm rather against killing anything just to kill it, these ARE an alien It's still a tough call. Damn conscience!
        • But here in the Virgin Islands (about 70 miles east of Purto Rico) most houses and buildings get thier water from a cistern (think basement full of rain water) the coqui infest the cisterns and breed and lay ggs ...well they also poison the water(thier skin has some nasty slimey stuff on it )..granted we don't drink cistern water for other reasons but this has been known to cause very strange and painful rashes.. since we do shower with cistern water... Now that we know about the caffine...i think its time to clean that cistern.....mwhahahah!!! and they are F*@king annoying
      • According to the article [], the frogs do freak out

        First, the researchers decided to spray the frogs with an overdose of caffeine.
        "It's like they have a heart attack," Matayoshi explained, "from like a hundred cups of coffee."
        The scene is not pretty. "They freak out," said Matayoshi, the hunter who is not unsympathetic to his prey.

        Frogs on a hundred cups of coffee ... what an image. Lots of little cappuccino cups?

        Sig: What Happened To The Censorware Project ( []

      • Frogs only eat moving objects (with very few exceptions). The caffiene is absorbed along with water directly into their bloodstream through their skin. It has a 'double-whammy' effect, affecting not only their nervous system, but it also drys them out.
      • Spiders and Caffeine (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 06, 2002 @01:32AM (#3468268)
        This is a spider's web. This is a spider's web on caffeine.

        (pic [])

        (Trust me, the link is relevant.)

        Any questions?

        Caffeine is a drug that seems to have a stronger impact on small animals.
  • Won't work. (Score:4, Funny)

    by Kyeo ( 577916 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @08:29PM (#3467494) Homepage
    The frogs would just annoy you and take no breaks.
  • but how will caffine help ?
  • by ElJefe ( 41718 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @08:32PM (#3467511)
    On a smaller scale, of course, there is always hand-hunting, which is how Nilton Matayoshi has spent the last year capturing 40 frogs.
    40 frogs in a year? That's less than one a week! If you're going to have a hobby, at least be good at it...
  • by geoffsmith ( 161376 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @08:34PM (#3467517) Homepage
    Amphibians, particularly frogs, are supposed to be an indicator species for pollution. From all accounts I've read they are dying off in great numbers around the world. Maybe because the live near the surface of the water, they are more sensitive to things like acid rain?

    So why all the frogs? Hawaii... also Australia has also had a heck of a time with frogs, and in BC we've had a problem with huge frogs (the tadpoles are the size of your fist, and mature frogs so big they have been eating the ducks!) Just seems like contradictory evidence to me, maybe some species are heartier than others?

    Websurfing done right! StumbleUpon []
    • These frogs were introduced by a foreign tourist. They are not native to Hawaii. The frogs have no natural enemies now in Hawaii because it is an island and no predators for the frogs evolved. These frogs populate extremely quickly leading to the death of the insect population that native birds and animals feel on there. As a result many species are dying off.

      This is all from a TLC show a week or so ago... A little late on the article guys.
      • ACtually, its not tourists- it simply through transported vegetable matter (potted plants, etc).

        Since these frogs don't have a tadpole stage (they grow from eggs laid in/on said plants) they are much easier to carry.

        Since they don't belong there are no natural predators, so their population grows unabated, and they compete with birds for food resources.

        These croakers have gotta go!

        And have you heard the sound sample? (go to hawaii star bulletin website) EEEESH!

        Thank god they haven't taken over kaua'i! (two weeks baby...)
    • in BC we've had a problem with huge frogs

      Er, eh? We have? Tell on, do. I'd like to see some of those monsters!

    • Geez Louise! Tadpoles the size of your fist eh? Know of any articles or pictures that shows these things in reference? I found a few things on google about BC frogs, but not much talking about these problematic huge frogs.
      • Sounds like bunk to me. Frogs eating ducks? Give me a break.
      • I can't seem to find anything online either. (although sometimes I just really can't find what I'm looking for using google) It was all over the papers for a while. Here's the only online reference I could find:

        It mentions "giant bullfrogs." I'm not sure if it's the same frog, but it sounds like it is. They are humongous. And by the way, "duck" should be "ducklings" in my original post. It still takes a big frog to eat a duckling.
    • To the naysayers, the common bullfrog is capable of eating ducklings, but its tadpoles are hardly fist sized.

      Frogs in a balanced ecosystem, as well as other amphibians, are a good indicator of pollution, but in Hawaii, as in Australia, and the Florida panhandle, non-native frogs overrun native populations by eating everything in sight including the native species.
    • "...and in BC we've had a problem with huge frogs (the tadpoles are the size of your fist, and mature frogs so big they have been eating the ducks!)"

      You have never seen "mountain chicken." These are frogs which are indigenous to certain parts of the caribbean. They get so big that a family of four can get more food out of it than two chickens.

    • > Amphibians, particularly frogs, are supposed to be an indicator species for pollution. From all accounts I've read they are dying off in great numbers around the world. Maybe because the live near the surface of the water, they are more sensitive to things like acid rain?

      Solution obvious: Set up a huge coal-fired generator immediately to the east of Hawaii, and remove the scrubbers from the smokestacks!

      It's arguably less-wasteful than having three tons of powdered caffeine sitting idle in a warehouse. If it ain't being used for the frogs, let me have some!.

      (My only complaint with three tons of powdered caffeine in Hawaii is that it probably means there was an awful lot of good Hawaiian coffee that's been ruined by decaffeination.)

  • You know, I'm sure there must be a better way to eliminate frogs than to overdose them on caffeine. The fact that they are amphibians means that they absorb a lot of things through their skin; I'm sure it would be possible to find something that these frogs can not stand but is rather innocuous to other species and just spread that around the perimeter of the hotel, or whatever else wants to be frog free. As for the caffeine . . . I'll take it. Mmmm, 3 tons of caffeine . . . I can stay up for weeks!
  • How do we get to all that powdered caffeine??!??

    OOooooooh, yeah......
  • Yes, alleged tree huggers, mod me down.

    The feds just can't quit, why the hell is it fed business if an infistation arrives to any State and that State is not allowed to eradicate the infevction?
    • My thoughts exactly! Once again, the federal govt. has to nose into what should be a state's own business and "protect" everyone from themselves.

      I suppose they're going to try to justify it by claiming the frogs "crossed state lines", making it a federal case?

      In the long run, I don't think something like a frog infestation problem is going to be cured without putting some sort of toxin or poison out. The sad thing is, there's probably a substance much more harmful to the ecosystem than some powdered caffeine that will end up being legal to use, simply because the FDA has already studied it and approved it.
  • WhydoesoneneedtoputupwiththeFDAregulations? Iwasn'ttheonewholeftthecanofJoltopen!
  • It's interesting to consider that one island's cultural icon, appearing on everything from school bags to shot glasses, is another island's uber-pest. The coqui's call is measured at roughly 90 decibels. It's driven people out of hotels, including the Ritz-Carlton. At one point, a hotel was offering a $75 bounty per frog... dead or alive.
  • But alas, while the Environmental Protection Agency would grant the Hawaii Department of Agriculture emergency temporary waivers to use caffeine as a pesticide, the EPA required that the infestation sites be monitored before and after application of the super-coffee, which had to be administered by trained, certified pest applicators.

    Attention Slashdot administration, this is your cue to insert a helpful banner ad [] here.

    You're welcome.

  • Just give the caffeine to the local kids and promise another hit for every frog they can stomp.

    I know a lot of little boys would jump at the opportunity.
  • About coqui (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    I live in Puerto Rico. I've always been thaught that coquis can not live outside of Puerto Rico, so their appearance in Hawaii comes as a surprise to me. The coqui is a "pet of sorts" here, if you bought a souvenir T-Shirt it would most likely have the picture of a coqui in it.

    They are rarely heard in cities but they abound in other areas. I know of foreigners how can not handle the sound at first, but after awhile they get accustomed, just like us. (Maybe in Hawaii it got REALLY out of control.) If you can spot a coqui alone (that is, not in deafeaning armies), you'll probably agree that they are quite OK.

    At one point coquis were believed to be headed for extinction.
    • Personally, I love coquis. I was down in PR myself not long ago, and loved their lullabye song. :-) What I heard was some friggin' MORON brought them to Hawaii b/c they had the brilliant idea that, hey, they're cool in Puerto Rico, why not other tropical islands? Yeah, so much for that. :P Anyways, if there's no natural predators, as is the case in Hawaii, yes, they must be gotten rid of. Kinda like these damn Japanese ladybugs up here that infest our house! Anyone have any suggestions on how to get rid of them!?
    • I don't find the noise annoying at all. In fact I wish we had those frogs here. I find the sound, especially the chorus, quite soothing.
    • I was also in Puerto Rico a few years ago and actually liked the sound of the things. And yeah, I have one of those souvenir t-shirts. :) I was told they only lived in PR, so I was also surprised to see this.

      But isn't the noise exaggerated a bit? They wren't THAT loud. I don't even remember hearing them inside the house. Granted, I was in town (Bayamon, a suburb of San Juan). It's probably worse in the jungle.

      Also, insects. Are there really so few insects in Hawaii that some frogs will endanger the birds by eating their food supply? Seems like more ways of getting rid of bugs is a GOOD thing.

      PR certainly has agriculture and tourism, so any long term threat to Hawaii seems unlikely.
  • by bc90021 ( 43730 ) <> on Sunday May 05, 2002 @08:51PM (#3467566) Homepage
    ...a plague of coders descended on Hawaii, eager to get at the caffeine and turn it into code!

    Now the Hawaii ag folks have to figure out how to get rid of all the coders. An anonymous source in the state government was quoted as saying "Actually, we're thinking of holding them, and not releasing them. We are going to corner the geek market, and then make a fortune charging other states by the hour."

    There is no word from the Whitehouse at this time regarding the swarm of geeks descending on Hawaii, but the President is expected to make a short statement later this evening.
  • Boy Not only does caffeine stimulate the central nervous system, increase blood pressure, constrict veins and arteries, and suppress you bodies natural sleep chemical, but it kills frogs!!!

    Next headline: Coffee and jolt cola found to help cure cancer

    Could you also imagine getting hold of the powder they use, better drink mix the alcohol

  • First, approximately halfway through the article, we come to learn that "At one point, a hotel was paying bounty hunters $75 a frog, dead or alive."

    We then learn later in the article that some areas possess frog population densities of up to "20,000 individuals an acre".

    Now perhaps it is just me, but does this not sound as though it could be a quite lucrative prospect for a person with the appropriate amount of ingenuity and good old-fashioned entrepreneurial spirit... Just with some quick math, the potential industry of ridding the islands from the scourge of uninvited amphibians could be worth as much as $1.5 million per acre.

    Of course, this is purely theoretical and such activities would hardly amount to such monetary windfalls, but it does make you think!!!
    • Given that the coqui are the size of a silver dollar and only croak at night, AND given Hawaii's position on the earth (very little "Dusk" time) I'm sure they're hard as HECK to catch!

      AS also outlined in the article, one guy caught 40 in a year... can you live off 3 grand?!

      Thankfully the island I'm going to in two weeks (Kaua'i) is not infested.
  • "Ribbitribbitribbitribbitribbitribbitribbitribbitr ibbitribbitribbitribbitribbit..."

    One might think they've got a Hawaiian Frog techno mix running on repeat on the beaches.
  • but doesn't raw caffeine kill humans on contact? Absorbed through skin & all? Are they sure this is a good thing to be spraying around?

    "The federal regulations proved too burdensome."

    Hello?! Aren't these regulations in place to prevent we-had-to-destroy-the-village-to-save-it syndrome?
  • We've come to one of the finest lilypads in the world and replaced this frog's caffeine powder with Folger's Crystals.

    Let's see if she notices.


    There you have it folks!

  • Don't get me wrong, I like caffeine, but it is not good for you. We have lots of studies to show this. I highly doubt that it is good for mother earth as well.
    • Oh give me a fucking break. "Mother Earth" Will eat every piece of waste our civilization ever produces, and the worst possible result is that we'll kill ourselves and a few other species off. It's not like caffeine isn't a naturally occuring substance ya fuckwit...

  • The Frogs have set up a Lan to properly channel their caffeine highs.
  • It's taking it away from them that'll do the trick.

    Just think about it... All those mornings that you rely on coffee to go to work. All those mornings that you need something to keep you awake, and not sleep in until noon. It's what prevents you from making your head explode.

    Get them hooked on coffee. Not just something in the water, but the frigging powdered kind. Kind of like a drug addict, where they inject it. Frogs are different though. It would diffuse right through their skin.

    Then, when you have an army of frogs addicted to the funny powder, stop giving it to them, and see what they do.

    • I would wonder if the frogs would set up rehab centers, or would they just take it cold turkey.

      Seriously Caffeine withdrawal in frogs could be quite a interesting phenomena,
      The website Neuroscience for Kids - Frogs and Caffeine [] mentions that a overdose of caffeine is lethal to frogs.

      I would only wonder how?

    • > Get them hooked on coffee. Not just something in the water, but the frigging powdered kind. Kind of like a drug addict, where they inject it. Frogs are different though. It would diffuse right through their skin.

      We all know that if you put a frog in a pot of water and heat it up slowly, the frog won't notice, and will boil to death.

      Now you're telling me that if you put a frog in a pot of water with some nice fresh-roasted and fresh-ground coffee, and heat it up slowly, the frog will notice, but it just won't care. Cool! :-)

      Meantime, I have visions of programmers on vacation in Hawaii sneaking out of the hotels at night to catch frogs and lick them in the same way that hippies and druggies lick toads for the bufotinin. (Except that the programmer gets paid $75 per frog for every "empty" frog he turns in ;-)

  • caffiene?

    No more drives to the coffee shop I'll just pull on a fake frog suit and pretend to tbe the world's biggest frog.

    And then I'll be there king...

    and once i've raised my army of super frogs "hopped" up on caffeine I will take over the world AHA HAHAHAHAHA!!!
    In all serious though has no one thought what this will actually do to the surronding enviroment?

    I live in southeren ontario Canada, recently we have had an insect infestation in the farmers' crops. So in order to control it we released thosands and thousands of geneticly enhanced lady bugs that would target the mites that were targeting the crops.

    The mite problem is gone but now we have a infestation of super bugs that won't die. I have seen entire sides of apartment buildings coated with the things...In novemeber no less(when there shouldn't be any of the critters left).

    My point here is when will we learn to stop screwing with mother nature...
  • Photos (Score:3, Informative)

    by loconet ( 415875 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @09:24PM (#3467646) Homepage
    This page [] has some photos and more information about the frogs. They're very small!!
  • Where's a Starbucks when you damn well need one?!
    They can have all of ours!
  • Am I the only one who though of this as a cool table condiment. it would take pizza to a new level.
  • This is from
    Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant that interferes with a neurotransmitter in the brain called adenosine. Caffeine also acts at other places in the body to increase heart rate, constrict blood vessels, relax air passages, and affect muscles. An overdose of caffeine is lethal to the coqui frog. Other animals, including humans, are also at risk from the dangers of caffeine. Therefore, only personnel from the Hawaii Department of Agriculture are allowed to use caffeine to control the frogs and they must monitor the effects of the drug in other species. Homeowners in Hawaii are encouraged to capture frogs by hand and contact the Hawaii Department of Agriculture.
    Maybe the 110 mg of caffeine I get from pills, not including the vast amounts of tea I drink isn't as good for me as I thought..... They have a link to the frog's mating call too. After listening to it, I can't blame them for wanting to get rid of them.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Two words...

    Frog Baseball
    • Setting yourself up for the Darwin. Frog baseball requires a "chaser" to make the frog jump to within the strike box. The position of "chaser" is incredibly dangerous given the bat swinging just inches away (hopefully). Frog golf is a much better option, IMO.

  • I didn't see it in the list, so I'll karma shoot myself.

    Bart gets the boot in Australia [] - after making a prank call, Bart arrives in Australia, unknowingly bearing a simple ordinary bullfrog, whose progeny then goes nuts and devastates the Australian continent.

    Marge: We have them in America. They're called bullfrogs.

    Clerk: What? That's an odd name. I'd have called them "chazzwazzers".

    Ribbit. Not only are the Simpsons running out of ideas, they're now predicting the Future. Any more episodes with Al Gore in them? Look for the season finale! </weak joke>

  • by Seth Finkelstein ( 90154 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @10:15PM (#3467746) Homepage Journal
    The Material Safety Data Sheet for Caffeine [] has a lot of good information

    Caffeine is toxic to the blood, lungs, nervous system, and mucous membranes. It is a human poison by ingestion and is a slight irritant of the skin and eye. The oral LD50 for caffeine is 127 mg/kg (mouse); the oral TD Lo for man is reported as 13 mg/kg.

    Signs/Symptoms of Overexposure:
    Exposure to ingested caffeine can cause convulsions, muscle spasms, tremors, poor muscle coordination, vomiting, and blood pressure increase. Continued excessive use in tea or coffee may lead to digestive disturbances, constipation, palpitations, shortness of breath, cardiac disorders, and depressed mental states.

    Apparently, you'd have to drink a lot of coffee to get a lethal dose. But it does seem to possible to kill yourself (or approach it) with caffeine pills.

    Sig: What Happened To The Censorware Project ( []

    • if you ever wanted to kill anybody...this is the way to do it. very small dosage and not usually screened for in an autopsy without previous suspicion. Nicotine is also very toxic with and L.D. 50 of 230 orally in mice. However, nicotine turns brown upon exposure to light, has an acrid burning taste, and smells of pyradine. However it is very cheap. Merck was unable to provide an L.D. number orally for humans for caffeine or nicotine. Remember though, the L.D. 50 is the dosage at which half of the specimens die. To insure lethal dosage, double the amount given in the L.D. 50. Happy poisioning I guess...
      • LD-50 for Caffeine in humans is approximately 75mg per kg of body mass.

        2x LD-50 doesn't ensure death, it just makes it more likely. I'm no toxologist or anything but at least I've got a handle on statistics. I'd bet that lethal dose requirements tend to fall into skewed normal distributions.
    • When I was working on the LSDVD project someone sent us 80lbs of Jolt. It came in two crates of 20oz bottles. I put one of the crates in my cube and over the course of the day would chain drink the soda. About 2pm I found I couldn't control the mouse anymore. As not amused as I was I repeated it for a few more days untill the Jolt was all gone. (The other three memebers of the team did get some, but I am fairly sure that I accidently got most of it.)

  • I saw somethign on the Discovery Channel about a month back about this. I even remember them discussing freezing them versus "cafeening" them if I may coin a term. Basically these immigrant frogs are destroying the insect population, leaving all the wondrous songbirds there with nothing to eat. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but if I recall correctly, Guam had this same problem and now there hasn't been a single songbird there for an entire generation.
  • by XBL ( 305578 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @10:28PM (#3467777)
    These frogs are being studied for their evolutionary traits. Right from the egss hatch the frogs, as there is no intermediate state of a tadpole.

    Maybe the lack of an intermediate stage has made this species even more hardy, and therefore more prevalent in Hawaii.

    No matter what, the Coqui are there to stay in Hawaii. They will just have to get used to it.
  • Years ago, my high school biology teacher liked to show this one film on Australian Cane Toads []. Basically, these buggers were introduced intentionally in Australia to eat a particular kind of insect that was destroying crops. Problem was, these toads will eat anything, so they didn't go for the insects that would stay up high on the crops when they could eat anything else that crawled by.

    They had a HUGE explosion of these things. This movie showed them in hoards. It also had this one scene with this hippie - the guy had a VW van and his hobby was to go around smashing these things. He would swerve the van from one side of the street to the other, running over the toads which would make a very satisfying pop. This hippie is the only thing I remember from high school biology.

    So, my point is that these toads were introduced for an ecological reason (pest control), but apparently these guys didn't understand ecology all that well. Of course, this Hawaii thing is different since the frogs weren't introduced intentionally, but it seems toads/frogs have a talent for growing explosively.

  • by tps12 ( 105590 ) on Sunday May 05, 2002 @10:45PM (#3467831) Homepage Journal
    From the article description:


    Excess noses cost Internet providers billions annually. Consider that the noseless ":)" conveys as much information as ":-)" at two-thirds the cost in bandwidth.

    Slashdot, as a pillar of the Internet community, stands to make a real difference in the fight against smiley noses. It would be great if it could act as a role model in this important struggle.

    Everyone: please run your messages through the following perl script to remove excess noses:

    #!/usr/bin/perl -w
    $_ = @ARGV ? shift @ARGV : ;
    s/([:;8B?|\%])[-o^]([\)\(|PB9oO\@0{Xx\*D&])/$1$2/g ; BR> print;
    print "\n";

    Note this is a beta version. It only handles one-line messages, and only "right-handed" smileys. Improvements are forthcoming, and patches are welcome.

    • Sorry, that first line should say

      $_ = @ARGV ? shift @ARGV : <STDIN>;

      And the "BR>" should just be a linebreak.
  • Sadly Hawaii isn't the only ecosystem being disrupted by exotic species. Most island ecologies are now threatened by these invaders. Australia has its cane toads and rabbits. Zebra mussels infest the US waterways. Some idiot in the 1930s decided he would dry up the Everglades in Florida by seeding it with swamp killing trees from a plane.

    Invasive species destroy biodiversity and alter ecosytems beyind thier ability to cope easily. Add to that the effect of human alteration and climate shift we are rapidly losing vital species and habitat. Unfortunatly there are no easy answers. Remember the SNL skit about "The Bat Problem?" :)

    Now if I may be excused I have to go battle the kudzu [], it grew another foot today.
  • Yes, in Puerto Rico they are an 'endangered species' [].

  • You've gotta be kidding me...ThinkGeek [] hasn't bought it yet?!?
  • So these coquis are as loud as 90cB?

    It sounds like a great excuse to build a robot that will hunt down noisy frogs.

    A hammer would be a cheap and easy weapon, but the thought of focusing a tone burst that matches the resonant frequency of the frog (somewhere between 100Hz and 3000Hz) gets me excited.

  • If it takes one person 1 year to catch 40 frogs, and the governments solution is a chemical spray, has nobody thought of just using a lawnmower or heavy duty roller?
  • by flk ( 518723 )
    So I sit here in front of my PC, catching my daily dose of /. when I come across this interesting post.

    Considering the fact that I am not an Hawaiian ecologist, I do not understand the dangers of the coquí's presence in Hawaii. Here, on its native island, it is harmless and it had been rumored that it couldn't survive anywhere else outside of PR. To think that it has survived in Hawaii must be exciting news for Puerto Rican ecologists ... but as the saying goes: one man's trash is another man's treasure ... of course, this case, it is the other way around.

    Yes, the coquís are cute and tiny and chirp like it's nobody's business. Their half female-attracting, half male-warning calls are not annoying. Raining season coming in, the night is filled with "co-QUI co-QUI" -- it really does make for a pleasant natural soundtrack.
  • Yeah right.

    "One dose for da for me...weeeee! One dose for da froggies..."

  • by gasp ( 128583 )
    I live on Maui, and my experience here goes back to the early 1970's.

    According to this story, "There are no naturally occurring reptiles or terrestrial amphibians, no snakes, iguanas, toads or salamanders in Hawaii. Until the coqui arrived, it was a frog-free world."

    Umm. No. It says the Coqui arrived around 1990. I wouldn't know about that. Nobody I know here has heard of these frogs. Perhaps the 40+ infestations claimed on Maui are simply places I don't go. HOWEVER...

    No other reptiles? No amphibians, toad or frogs before 1990? Totally false. For one thing, these islands are famous for having Geckos. We've got hundreds of them right in our yard. There's more than one within 20 feet of me right now. And we have other salamander-like lizards here than geckos. I'm not a biologist. And I suppose the frogs or toads I played with as a kid 30 years ago weren't here either back then.

    I don't know when or how frogs, toads, geckos, salamanders and such got here, but it was long before 1990. I'm sure there is some basis for truth in this story, but I've managed to escape hearing even one of these tens of thousands of 90-decibel frogs on Maui. That doesn't mean they aren't here, just that the story sure doesn't reflect any common knowledge here as far as I can tell after discussing this story with my friends.
  • No one here really seems to care about the invasion of the frogs. Hawaii is a lovely environment and is home to more than 10,000 species of plant and animal life found nowhere else in the world. It is blessed with having virtually every major ecological zone (the only one missing is permafrost-tundra, like think Antarctica) and was virtually isolated from everywhere else in the world, as the islands are at least two thousand miles away from any other large land mass.

    That is, until we started to really live there, and now invasive species threaten many of the plants and wildlife that are unique to Hawaii.

    Obligatory linkage for the karma-whoring:

    Nature Conservancy []

    Google directory []

    Carnivorous Caterpillars! []

    There's a great deal to know and understand about the endangered species in Hawaii and the invasive species that threaten them. We have no snakes, or many other reptiles, for that matter. There are no scorpions, no tarantulas, none of that really vile stuff you find in other rainforests.

  • Today, three tons of powered caffeine sits in a warehouse on the Big Island, as the Hawaiians contemplate their next move.

    The programmer's mecca.

    3 tons of powdered caffeine, sitting in a warehouse? Why do I get the distinct feeling that I am going to be seeing ThinkGeek ads for this stuff?

Trap full -- please empty.